People, Travel

NZ Tourism Overtakes Dairy as Forex Source

NZ Tourism Overtakes Dairy as Forex Source NZ Tourism Overtakes Dairy as Forex Source

According to figures released on Wednesday, tourism has overtaken dairy as New Zealand's top earner of overseas dollars. And tourism officials say the success of the fantasy movie trilogy "The Hobbit" has helped, AP reported. The dairy industry is struggling to recover from a slump in prices, while a record 3.4 million visitors arrived in New Zealand in the year ending September. Spending by international tourists was up by 20% in the year ending March when compared with the previous year. That follows a 17% rise the year before. Kevin Bowler, the chief executive of Tourism New Zealand, said people were drawn to New Zealand by the movies' spectacular landscapes and its outdoor lifestyle. They showcased some of that scenery and were heavily marketed overseas. "The result was a heck of a lot of interest in New Zealand," he said. One survey showed 16% of tourists cited the movies as influential in their initial interest in New Zealand. Directed by Peter Jackson, "The Hobbit" trilogy built on the success of his earlier, critically acclaimed trilogy, "The Lord of the Rings." The six movies earned a total of nearly $6 billion at the box office.


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